Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Low unemployment shows economy in good shape

Hon Grant Robertson

Minister of Finance

Hon Willie Jackson

Minister of Employment

5 February 2020



Today’s news of low unemployment, rising wages and record numbers of Maori in work shows the economy is in good shape and that the Government is delivering better outcomes across New Zealand.

“The Coalition Government has overseen a strong economy. Our investments in infrastructure, our focus on lifting wages of those who previously missed out, and our regional investments are making a difference,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said.

“This is particularly the case for Maori, with today’s numbers showing that a record number of Maori are in work,” Employment Minister Willie Jackson said.

The unemployment rate fell to 4% in the December 2019 quarter from 4.1% in September, according to Stats NZ.

“When we came into Government unemployment was 4.7%. We have seen the lowest levels in a decade in the past two years,” Grant Robertson said.

Wage growth continues to sit near decade highs, with average hourly wages up 3.6% from a year ago and well ahead of inflation at 1.9%.

“We have seen wages grow more quickly than the cost of living, meaning that more New Zealanders are getting ahead and benefitting from a growing economy.”

The number of Maori in employment rose by 4,900 in the quarter to 322,600. This is the highest number on record, according to Stats NZ.

“This Government has focussed on supporting Maori employment through policies to boost skills and get rangatahi into work. The investments made by the Provincial Growth Fund are also supporting our regions, after they were neglected for too long,” Willie Jackson said.

Grant Robertson said today’s numbers add to data showing the economy is in good shape amid global headwinds like the US-China trade war, Brexit uncertainty and geopolitical tensions.

“The Treasury is currently assessing the potential impacts of the Coronavirus outbreak. But we know we’re in good shape to withstand global headwinds. Our Economic Plan and recent significant infrastructure investments will support the economy and position New Zealand for the future.”

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Coronavirus: On The Addiction To Chinese Student Fees, And A Possible Future For RNZ Concert

Last week, Australian PM Scott Morrison extended its ban on foreign visitors from or passing through from mainland China – including Chinese students - for a third week. New Zealand has dutifully followed suit, with our travel ban extending until next Monday at least, presumably dependent to some extent on what Morrison decides to do later this week.
Our universities are now asking for an exemption to the travel ban for their Chinese students, who would still, the universities assure us, be subjected to strict quarantine procedures upon arrival. Given how the inability of the university system to care for its own students on campus made world news last year, that promise may not do much to reduce the coronavirus fears among the wider New Zealand public. More>>


Water Woes: Wellington Reflects National Problem

Water utilities right across the country face major challenges to upgrade and maintain their underground three waters network. Water New Zealand’s Technical Manager, Noel Roberts says Wellington’s waste water woes are not unique to the capital city... More>>


2020 And Beyond: National’s Economic Plan

National Leader Simon Bridges has today outlined National’s economic plan heading into election 2020. “National understands the economy and how it impacts on New Zealanders day to day lives... More>>


Abortion Legislation Committee: Abortion Bill Report Presented To The House

The Abortion Legislation Committee has presented its report on the Abortion Legislation Bill to the House. A copy of the report is available here. The bill seeks to have abortion services provided like other health services... More>>


Local Government NZ: New Report A Pathfinder For Affordable Housing

A report released today by LGNZ provides a roadmap for councils finding their way through the complex policy, regulatory and market tools available to help enable more affordable housing developments for New Zealanders. With demand soaring, rents ... More>>


“Can Do Better”: Sallies Election Year Report Card

This year’s State of the Nation report by The Salvation Army offers a mixed bag of outcomes, with some significant headline progress - but also an ambitious list of “can do better”. Government action is delivering limited improvements... More>>






InfoPages News Channels